Harvard’s student-run radio station, WHRB 95.3 FM has become the first student organization to receive Leaf One certification through the university Green Office program, “…and it looks like achieving Leaf Two won’t be too much of a stretch” says Dan Thorn ’11, the station’s Chief Studio Engineer.

Thorn began to “green” WHRB’s office in the basement of Pennypacker Hall in February 2009, working with members of the Resource Efficiency Program (REP) to identify opportunities for energy conservation and waste reduction. Thorn set up power management on 10 of the station’s computers, adorned broadcasting equipment and light switches with “Turn Me Off” stickers, doubled the number of recycling bins available, replaced incandescent bulbs with CFLs, and obtained a vending miser for the rarely disturbed soda machine. With some help from Harvard Yard Operations, they should even have a dual flush toilet by the end of summer.

Making Changes, Seeing Results

“The biggest part was just raising awareness amongst the DJs.” Thorn said, “WHRBies are already kind of a green group-you can see all of our bikes right outside the station. It was mostly just reminding them to turn off their equipment when they’re done with it.”

Those reminders must have worked. Between the efforts of the radio station and the hard work of Anthony Pacillo, Manager of Harvard Yard and Freshman Dorms and the rest of Yard Ops, Pennypacker has shown vast energy savings. In March and April, Pennypacker had a 15-20% reduction in energy consumption, or about 1,600 kWh less energy consumed each month compared to an average of the three previous years.  

“We try really hard to make WHRB the best radio station in Cambridge. Hopefully we can also make it the greenest radio station in Cambridge,” Thorn adds.

To listen to the greenest radio station in the Cambridge area, tune into 95.3, or stream it online.